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Ingham County MI
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Franklin Avenue Presbyterian Church
Franklin, Ingham Co Michigan


Lansing, MI (Franklin Avenue Presbyterian Church) (1930s) - Contributed by Paul Petosky

This church is an off-shoot from the First Presbyterian Church of Lansing. The members of the latter church in October, 1863, formed a society and commenced holding services in the old chapel previously occupied by the Methodists and Presbyterians. The Methodists had entertained the project of forming a second society in North Lansing, and proposed to erect a new church edifice at the foot of Washington Avenue; but after thoroughly considering the matter the project was given up as impracticable. About this time James Turner, a leading member of the Methodist Church, proposed to Rev. Mr. Armstrong to donate the lot at the foot of Washington Arenuc to tbe Presbyterians, provided they would undertake to supply North Lansing with gospel preaching. This very liberal proposition of Mr. Turner's was accepted, a board of Irustees wan appointed, and immediate steps were taken towards the erection of a commodious house of worship,

In October, 18G3, the Presbyterian Synod met at Lansing, and among the attending members was Rev. Alfred Bryant, whose services were secured for the new society for one year, beginning with November, 1863.

Early in 1864, under Mr. Bryants ministry, "The Franklin Street Church" was organized and established on a firm foundation. The original membership was composed of twenty-five persons dismissed from the First Church,about twenty from other churches, and ten converts, the fruits of a series of meetings held early in the spring of 1864. The church organisation was completed on the 20th of April, 1864. Mr. Bryant continued as pastor until August, 1865, when he resigned his charge preparatory to engaging in missionary labor.

The work of erecting a house of worship was pushed vigorously under the supervision of Mr. Bryant, and the building was completed in October, 1865, about two motilhs after the resignation of the pastor. In the meau time, Rev, C. S. Armstrong bad resigned his chaplaincy in the army and returned to Lansing. Upon the resignation of Mr. Bryant, Mr. Armstrong's services were procured as stated supply, and he commenced his labors about the 1st of September, 1865.

The new edifice was dedicated on the 3d of October, in the last-mentioned year, with appropriate ceremonies. Mr. Armstrong continued to perform the duties of pastor until the month of April, 1869, when he resigned to accept a call from Alton, IL.

On the 3d of Jane, 1869, Rev. William Grand, of Galt, Canada, accepted a call and served the society until September, 1870, when he was succeeded by Rev. Alfred Bryant, who became a second time pastor of this church. Mr. Bryant was regularly installed in December of that year, and remained until Sept. 1, 1874, when his resignation was tendered and reluctantly accepted. Succeeding him, for a period of eighteen months, came Rev. Coles R. Wilkins, who resigned at the end of that period, and returned to the Slate of New York.

From about midsummer of 1876 to the summer of 1877 the society was without the services of a settled pastor. The Sunday-school services were, however, continued regularly.

In the summer of 1877, Rev. W. H. Allbright, a student of Auburn New York Theological Seminary, occupied the dealt by invitation for about three months, succeeding which there were no regular services until the summer of 1879, when steps were taken to procure the services of Rev. D. L. Munro, who was then in Europe completing his theological studies. On the 24th of August, in that year, Mr. Munro began his labors as pastor elect. On the 17th of September following he was examined by the Lansing Presbytery, in session at Marshall, and being found acceptable, was duly installed on the 19th of September as pastor of the church, which position he still occupies. The membership of both church and Sabbath-school is large and the society is prosperous.

History of Ingham and Eaton Counties by Samuel Durant